March 2, 2019
The three paragraphs below were among the conclusions I had drawn from the first Trump-Kim summit held in Singapore on June 12, 2018 (*):
- The Singapore summit marks the relaunching, under more favorable circumstances and with a lot of theater, of decades of diplomatic negotiations with Pyongyang on denuclearization. However, the DPRK is now an established nuclear power. Thus, there is a long road ahead and a US president with little patience.
- One may conclude therefore that in the negotiations soon to be launched, the Trump White House would insist on rapid denuclearization and Kim Jong Un on the need to normalize relations and at least a gradual lifting of sanctions.
- It seems that under Mr. Trump conventional diplomacy will give way to one-to-one deal-making with no mention of agreements, treaties and multilateralism.